'That's what he does' – Kidd hails dazzling Doncic display as Mavs snap losing steak
Jason Kidd praised the performance of Luka Doncic after the point guard led the Dallas Mavericks to a much-needed away win against the Indiana Pacers.
Doncic was cleared to play against the Pacers at Gainbridge Fieldhouse after his one-game suspension for a 16th technical of the season was rescinded earlier on Monday.
The four-time NBA All-Star starred with 25 points (eight-of-17 shooting), seven rebounds and six assists to guide the Mavs to a 127-104 victory, snapping their four-game losing streak.
"That's what he does," coach Kidd said. "He's one of the best players in the league at finding guys and then he's able to catch and shoot – not just once but multiple times."
The Mavericks' season had been hanging by a thread following defeats to the Memphis Grizzlies, the Golden State Warriors, and the Charlotte Hornets back-to-back.
But with Doncic stepping up and Kyrie Irving chipping in with 16 points (seven-of-11), six assists, three blocks and two steals, Dallas are now 37-39 for the season.
Kidd's side are a half-game behind the Los Angeles Lakers (37-38) and Oklahoma City Thunder (37-38) as they battle it out for the last play-in spot.
The 33-43 Pacers have now lost three straight and six of eight, meanwhile, and former Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle accepts his side had little chance with Doncic clearly in the mood.
"It's tough," Carlisle said. "Luka makes a couple of passes that were unbelievable, that only one player in the world can make."
Doncic's dazzling display proved the difference, but Carlisle – who has a league-leading 11 technicals this season – was not surprised the league allowed him to play.
"I don't know how many I have myself, I just know I've surpassed the five the team can pay for," he said.
"They're not cheap, so if you're going to get them, you better get your money's worth."
The Mavs have another road trip at the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday, while the Pacers host Eastern Conference leaders Milwaukee Bucks on the same day.